As mentioned yesterday I spent the past few weeks thinking about how I may change the way of writing articles on this Blog. This week I will start a new routine – each day I will publish one blog entry for a different topic, Tuesday will be Movies and Film Day – there will posts about things that I saw, I watched recently either it was in the local cinema or on TV, DVD, Blue Ray or any similar media.
Apart from books and comics which can be taken with you any time you want movies were not that mobile in the early eighties. Therefore I spent a lot of time in front of the small screen to watch movies. Especially Sunday morning, right before the way to the church with the family I tended to wake up early to watch old black & white movies. The local television provider ORF showed some old comedies, some silent movies among others in these early hours each Sunday. I kinda grew up with Charlie Chaplin, Laurel & Hardy, Buster Keaton and later on with a lot of movies by Frank Capra, Ernst Lubitsch, Fritz Lang, Billy Wilder and many of those movies are still my all-time favourite movies. I will never forget the first time I saw “Arsenic and Old Lace (1944, directed by Frank Capra)” or “To be or not to be (1942, directed by Ernst Lubitsch)”. Apart from that I got quite fond of Horror Stories and got lost in the old Frankenstein, Dracula and Werewolves Movies. Each and everyone didn’t give me the creeps, they entertained me with the sufficient amount of suspense, seems quite strange when I think about it, I was less than ten years old in those days.
When I grew up I got more interested in comedies, it was the age of “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986, directed by John Hughes)“, “Back To The Future (1985, directed by Robert Zemeckis)” and many others. It was the time where a new era of directors and actors became famous and filled our heads with funny moments. I went to the local cinema at least once a week, having it located right on the other side of the street kinda helped a lot. I’ve seen E.T., Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Octopussy and Return of the Jedi. Sitting there, in a dark room, diving into another world provided by actors, a team of technicians, writers, special effects experts and a director kinda moved me. Each week I went to the cinema I looked at the posters and choose one of those movies – it was quite cheap in those days and my pocket money was enough to make this possible. In addition to this I read some magazines which included background material, interviews and special collector’s cards, small posters of movies which had details like director, production date, actors, writer(s), plot and so printed on it. Those were the pre-internet times. I loved them and collected them, put them in boxes and later on when I had most of the information memorised I put them on the walls and on the ceiling in my room. Imagine this – my room was filled with layers of film posters hanging on the walls, the cupboards, the ceiling and even the door. The only free space was the window, there has to be some light and air coming into the room.
Movies was one of my interests that never got lost, I spent times in cinemas with friends – sometimes also alone – to watch a new movie, doesn’t matter if it is a blockbuster, an indie production or a foreign production with subtitles. By the end of the nineties, when I lived in vienna I even went to a so-called “Sneak Preview” each week, at the Apollo Cinema every Tuesday. Within this event you – the audience – had no clue what will be shown tonight. You have to buy the tickets (no reservation) and had the opportunity of seeing movies in advance to a premiere (sometimes). As you may imagine – there were no big blockbusters, but we saw movies like American Pie, High Fidelity, Being John Malkovich, The Cider House Rules and The Whole Nine Yards. We were a small group of about 5-8 people who shared the interest of loving movies and watching nearly anything. This kinda lasted for at least two years and then I left vienna and move back to the city where I was born.
There it happened to be that a locally founded university expanded it’s branches, one of those was also organising some events, like showing movies from special areas, genres or sometimes even directors. I remember very well the one time where they’ve shown movies from Pedro Almodovar for about two weeks. Later on they got the chance to build a small cinema very close to the university and since it’s opening I became a regular guest, having a small bar within this building makes going to the movies a special event again. I love this much more in comparison with going to a mall – don’t get me wrong, it’s the movie that counts most – but still it can be like an event, a wonderful evening with atmosphere. Especially when they make an event and invite actors, writers or directors and make a Q& A after the movie. Can be quite interesting, believe me.
So, that’s it for now – see you next week in case you share my love for movies. Have fun until then and enjoy.